Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
When to Cite
This page gives you guidance on when you should cite your sources. It also gives you a handout/video detailing some strategies for generating citations.
When to Cite
You must cite sources if any of the following about your work is true:
You use someone else’s idea(s)
You use someone else’s work
You use someone else’s words
You use direct quotations
When Not to Cite
You do not need to cite the following types of information:
Undisputed facts or matters of public record
As examples: WWII was fought between 1939-1945; Hawaii does not observe daylight savings time.
Common knowledge in your subject or discipline
As examples: The chemical formula of water for a chemist; Shakespeare's year of birth for a dramatist.
experiences, memories, thoughts, or ideas
As examples: Falling down the stairs when you were 6-years old; your cupboards being overrun with ants.
This guide will teach you when you need to cite and give you step-by-step instructions for getting citations.
This video will give you step-by-step instructions on how to use various citation tools.